Monday, February 27, 2012

A Nasty Little Story

Skillfully wrought...

Roman Polanski's new movie Carnage is based upon the Tony Award-winning comedy God of Carnage written by French playwright Yasmina Reza.

It takes a bitterly cynical thrill in piercing, lifting, then shredding the characters' hypocritical veneers to expose the racism, sexism, classism, and marital discord that suppurates beneath.

Powerful performances by Jodie Foster, Christoph Waltz, Kate Winslet, and John C. Reilly only make the ever more vicious excoriations all the more painful.

Carnage reminds me of the similarly self-indulgent Six Degrees of Separation in that it passes as deep only to people too wrapped up in their hip urban sensibility to realize they are the characters being viciously lampooned.

Not everyone shares my dim regard for Carnage.  I passed on a chance to attend the play at the Guthrie last year because I feared it would be exactly as unpleasant as the movie turned out to be.  For some reason I entertained some hope the movie would be as engaging as it is well done.  Oh well.  When my friend asked if we could leave before it ended I was happy to go.

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